‘Last Night In Soho’ A Thrilling Time Machine
Start writing a post

‘Last Night In Soho’ A Thrilling Time Machine

Leading ladies Thomasin McKenzie and Anya Taylor-Joy carry an innovative story until it falls flat in the third act

Anya Taylor-Joy as Sandie puts on earrings and stares at a dresser's mirror while Thomasin McKenzie as Eloise looks on in an adjacent reflection. A photo of Sandie sits on the mirror in this still image from Focus Features' "Last Night in Soho."
Credit: Parisa Taghizadeh / © 2021 Focus Features, LLC

What if you could visit 1960s London in your dreams, but it quickly turns into a horrible nightmare you can't wake up from?

This is what happens and more in "Last Night in Soho" from director and writer Edgar Wright ("Shaun of the Dead" and "Baby Driver"). It's a haunting psychological thriller, but the third act falls into a rushed finale.

Last Night in Soho - Official Teaser Trailer [HD] - In Theaters October www.youtube.com

Fashion student Eloise (Thomasin McKenzie), or Ellie, loves anything old including her treasured record player or her antiquated clothing, and she has a fascination with the 1960s. Early on, the audience learns something is strange with her as she sees her dead mother in a mirror and her grandmother often expresses concern with Ellie's visions as she moves to London for college.

Her roommate (Synnove Karlsen) is a modern rich mean girl making Ellie's life miserable, but thankfully one boy (Michael Ajao) takes a romantic interest in Ellie to ease her troubles. Nevertheless, she rents a flat owned by an old woman (Diana Rigg). During her first night, she dreams of a glamorous aspiring singer from the 1960s named Sandie (Anya Taylor-Joy), whom she sees mirroring Ellie's movements in reflections, and the actress is given a chance at success with shady talent agent Jack (Matt Smith). The more Ellie visits these dreams, the more her concepts on dreams, realities and nightmares blur.

Cinematography flushed with dark shades of red and blue from Chung-hoon Chung is phenomenal. It's easy to distinguish what's real and what's a dream sequence – until it's not. And that lines up well with the story's ambiguity. It's heightened with music scores from Steven Price and an evocative rendition of "Downtown" performed by Taylor-Joy, both with an uptempo and a downtempo.

"Downtown (Downtempo)" performed by Anya Taylor-Joy - Official Music Video - Last Night in Soho www.youtube.com

Taylor-Joy and McKenzie prove they're two of the best young actresses in the industry. It's fun to watch them play off each other's characters who are opposites of each other.

The story is original and gripping. With each visit to the dream world, viewers feel dread and anticipation bubbling to the surface. Things get scarier as the movie goes on, especially with one significant jump scare with a phone. And as the final twist unfolds, it's thrilling albeit predictable. But things collapse into a rushed conclusion that's unfulfilling because the characters pretend like nothing happened despite serious casualties and mental trauma.

It's not the best way the film could've ended, but try to glaze over that and the audience has a decent film to see in theaters for spooky season.

Score: 7/10

See "Last Night in Soho" in theaters starting Friday, October 29. Follow the reporter on Twitter at @s_incorvaia, and follow her podcast at @PlotDevicesPod on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Report this Content

No Sex And Upstate New York

A modern-day reincarnation of Carrie Bradshaw's classic column


Around the age of 12, when I was deciding whether or not to be gay, Satan appeared on my left shoulder. “Ramsssey,” he said with that telltale lisp. “Come over to our side. We have crazy partiessss.” He made a strong case, bouncing up and down on my shoulder with six-pack abs and form-fitting Calvin Kleins. An angel popped up on the other shoulder and was going to warn me about something, but Satan interrupted- “Shut up, you crusty-ass bitch!’ The angel was pretty crusty. She disappeared, and from that moment forward I was gay.

Keep Reading... Show less

To The Classes That Follow

I want you to want to make the most of the years that are prior to Senior year

To The Classes That Follow
Senior Year Is Here And I Am So Not Ready For It

I was you not that long ago. I was once an eager freshman, a searching sophomore, and a know-it-all junior. Now? Now I am a risk taker. Not the type that gets you in trouble with your parents, but the type that changes your future. Senior year is exciting. A lot of awesome things come along with being the top-dog of the school, but you, right now, are building the foundation for the next 4 years that you will spend in high school. I know you've heard it all. "Get involved", "You'll regret not going to prom", "You're going to miss this". As redundant as these seem, they're true. Although I am just at the beginning of my senior year, I am realizing how many lasts I am encountering.

Keep Reading... Show less

The Power Of Prayer Saved My Best Friend's Life

At the end of the day, there is something out there bigger than all of us, and to me, that is the power of prayer.

Julie Derrer

Imagine this:

Keep Reading... Show less

Why Driving Drives Me Crazy

the highways are home


With Halloween quickly approaching, I have been talking to coworkers about what scares us. There are always the obvious things like clowns, spiders, heights, etc. But me? There are a number things I don't like: trusting strangers, being yelled at, being in life or death situations, parallel parking. All of these are included when you get behind the wheel of a car.

Keep Reading... Show less
Baseball Spring Training Is A Blast In Arizona
Patricia Vicente

Nothing gets me more pumped up than the nice weather and the sights and sounds of the baseball season quickly approaching.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments